This year WhoWhatWhy spent considerable resources shining a light on election vulnerabilities, and how bad actors both foreign and domestic are trying to undermine our most precious resource, democracy. We think some of these outstanding pieces deserve a second look.

This year WhoWhatWhy spent considerable resources shining a light on election vulnerabilities, and how bad actors both foreign and domestic are trying to undermine our most precious resource, democracy. We think some of these outstanding pieces deserve a second look.

There is probably not another news outlet in the US that dedicated such a high share of its resources to covering election integrity. This year alone, we published more than 100 articles on this vital issue.

Why are we doing this? Because we understand that the right to vote — and fair elections — are under assault. The stories below illustrate how far-reaching these threats to democracy are.

Kris Kobach, Donald Trump, Mike Pence, Matthew Dunlap

Maine Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap superimposed over President Donald Trump announcing formation of the Election Integrity Commission. Photo credit: Adapted by WhoWhatWhy from Michael McIntee / White House / YouTube and C-SPAN / YouTube.

Exclusive: How the Threat of Exposure Killed Trump’s ‘Voter Fraud’ Commission


One of the commission’s few Democrats tells WhoWhatWhy it was set up to restrict voting access from its inception. He believes President Donald Trump and its members are now trying to cover their tracks.

Will Trump’s Judges Set Back Voting Rights?


The decisions of federal courts have put an end to many voter suppression schemes cooked up by crooked politicians. But many of President Donald Trump’s nominees have troubling records when it comes to voting rights. Will they put partisan interests above the law?

Public Pays a High Price for Extreme Gerrymandering


The impact of gerrymandered maps and voter suppression efforts can be devastating for a state — even after courts have stepped in to overturn them. North Carolina is a poster child for the way this assault on democracy leads to laws that should never have been enacted.

Voting Info in Spanish Often Lost in Translation


Voter information in Spanish, which is required in many jurisdictions, is often poorly translated, partially missing, or completely unavailable.

Did Voter Suppression Cost Democrats a Crucial Victory?


When control of Virginia’s House of Delegates hung in the balance last year, there was talk about the importance of voting. What some overlooked, however, was the impact of voter suppression. Until now. A WhoWhatWhy investigation uncovers incompetence and blatant voter suppression on election day.

Ensuring Poll Access for Disabled Voters Still a Big Problem


Disabled citizens are not voting at the same rate as the able-bodied, often due to poor accessibility at polls throughout the US. This predicament is discouraging millions from casting their votes.


Polling places could become stages for ugly confrontations between voter challengers and voters. Photo credit: Evan Nesterak / Wikimedia (CC BY 2.0)

‘Voter Integrity’ Vigilantes on a Purging Mission


State laws allowing individuals to challenge other individuals’ right to vote — supposedly in the name of voting integrity — are being weaponized, causing havoc and abuse at the polls.

Use It or Lose It — Voter Purges on the Rise


Voter purging is on the rise in the US, according to a new report. Unfortunately, showing up at the ballot box and exercising your constitutional right is no guarantee that your vote will be counted.

5 Years After ‘Shelby County,’ Democracy Has Suffered


Five years ago, a US Supreme Court decision had the practical effect of making it harder to vote in many states. Americans are still dealing with the consequences, and it’s only getting worse.

polling place closures

Data from The Leadership Conference Education Fund (PDF) and The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Photo credit: Brutal Deluxe / Wikimedia

Shuttered Polling Sites Cast Shadow Over Midterm Elections


Georgia has shut down over 200 polling sites since 2014, and a string of recent closures in a predominantly African-American jurisdiction is raising eyebrows as the midterms approach.

Vladimir Putin, Russia, Vladimir Potanin, ByteGrid, Maryland, elections

President of Russia Vladimir Putin (left) meets with Russian oligarch Vladimir Potanin, CEO of Norilsk Nickel and leading investor of AltPoint Capital Partners, LLC (right) on January 31, 2017 (top). Early voting in Baltimore, Maryland on June 12, 2014 (bottom left). Maryland state flag (bottom right). Photo credit: Adapted by WhoWhatWhy from President of Russia (CC BY 3.0), Maryland GovPics / Flickr (CC BY 2.0), and Michael Wheeler / Wikimedia.

Did You Know Russians Can Help Run US Elections — Legally?


A gaping hole in US election security seems to be that foreign investors can purchase companies charged with providing voter registration software and other election-related services. And nobody seemed to be aware of this — or care enough to do something — until now.

Florida, Governor, Rick Scott, Hurricane Michael

Governor Rick Scott speaking at CPAC FL in Orlando, Florida, in 2011, superimposed over Hurricane Michael, October 10, 2018. Photo credit: Adapted by WhoWhatWhy from NOAA and Gage Skidmore / Flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0).

Is Florida’s Governor Playing Favorites With GOP Hurricane Victims?


Two election-year hurricanes, two contrasting responses from Florida Gov. Rick Scott. Did he have a change of heart, or are this year’s victims simply more likely to vote for him?

Florida Election Offers Target-Rich Environment for Russia’s Agents


When Dutch authorities apprehended a team of Russian hackers, it became clear that Vladimir Putin is willing to send teams of cyber operatives abroad. How much damage could they do in a state like Florida? We asked the experts.

Related front page panorama photo credit: Adapted by WhoWhatWhy from wordcloud (Kevin Smith / Flickr – CC BY 2.0).


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